A visit to Doca de Santo Amaro has been on my list for a long time, but no matter how often we drove past it when we went to or from Lisbon, a visit to this beautiful part of the port never really fit into our busy timetable.
The Doca are a truly nice part of the harbour these days. How different from the past, when this area had loads of derelict warehouses where mainly homeless people stayed.
Doca Santo Amoro is located under Ponte 25 de Abril and that makes this place extra special. Not only because the immense pillars of the bridge have their base in the Doca, but also because you can hear the continuous sound of cars crossing the bridge. By the way, that sound is in no way annoying. Somehow it is the perfect soundtrack for this up and coming area.
Cocktails, food and relaxation
Doca Santo Amoro is a nice place to have a drink in the afternoon. Want to enjoy the nightlife? Come after dinner. There are many different restaurants and bars: from a fish restaurant to a burger joint, but there is also a cocktail bar and the chain of ice cream parlours Artisani also has a branch here if you fancy some delicious ice cream.
You wouldn’t have guessed it but prices here at the Doca are very reasonable. The menu of the day will set you back less than 12 euros and a good caipirinha costs no more than 5 euros. Not bad at all!
From the terraces you have a nice and good overview of the harbour, the Tagus river and the city of Almada on the other side of the river.
Under the bridge
When you walk along the terraces and towards the tennis and basketball court, you will finally end up all the way under the bridge. It’s only then that you realise just how big these pillars are (and how few there really are), but also that the bridge is really very tall.
The concrete pillars are decorated with paintings and the view over Almada is beautiful.
There are different ways to do this: by public transport, walking or cycling. If you choose the latter two, there is a walking and cycling path along the Tagus river from the Doca. You walk to Belem from the Doca in about 30 minutes, cycling takes less than 10 minutes.